Light, quick, easy and refreshing. I don’t know what are your preferences, but this is the description of my ideal spring or summer dessert and unbaked cheesecake meets all these conditions. Some of you might remember that my unbaked cheesecakes are made with fresh cheese (also called “quark”) and not the most popular cream cheese (see the Unbaked Vanilla Cheesecake here). They are low in fat, have a slight, refreshing tanginess I like and have a light consistency, comparable to Greek yogurt, which is a very good substitution here (much better than US cream cheese). Since I don’t like the crust in cheesecakes, I always omit it, which makes such a dessert even lighter and quicker to prepare.
Unbaked cheesecakes are in my opinion an excellent basis to experiment with different fruits without losing their precious vitamins, nutrients and delicate aroma. If you decide to try fresh cheese, its slight tartness goes particularly well with red fruits such as strawberries. I realised it a couple of days ago when I decided to make my first strawberry dessert this year. Not only was it, quick, easy and practical (it requires only four ingredients), but most of all it enhanced and preserved all of the the strawberry flavours and its enticing aroma.
TIPS & UPDATE: If you don’t find fresh cheese (quark) the best option would be to use the Greek yogurt. If you are a cream cheese fan, this dessert can of course be prepared with cream cheese too, but the consistency will probably be less mousse-like and the taste different (I admit I haven’t made or tasted such a version).
The amounts of gelatin depend sometimes on the brand. Leaves are sometimes bigger, sometimes smaller, powdered gelatin sometimes contains other products and doesn’t set as well as pure gelatin in powder… In short, the aim here is to use here the amount of gelatin which sets 500 ml/2 cups/about 17 oz liquid.
Preparation: 15 minutes + 2 hours in the fridge
Ingredients (serves 3-4):
300 g (about 10 oz) fresh cheese/quark or Greek yogurt (or cream cheese if you don’t find quark or Greek yogurt)
1 tablespoon gelatin (or gelatin leaves, the amount necessary to set 500 ml liquid, see TIPS above)
200 g (about 7 oz) strawberries
4 flat tablespoons confectioner’s sugar or sweetener of your choice
Put aside 4-5 strawberries for the decoration.
Dissolve the gelatin in 4 tablespoons warm water. (If using leaves, proceed as indicated on the package).
Mix the cheese, the sugar and half of the strawberries in a food processor.
Add the dissolved gelatin and mix once more.
Cut up the remaining strawberries in quarters (do not use those for the decoration!) and place them in individual glasses.
Pour the cheese mixture over the strawberries and put into the fridge for at least two hours.
Decorate just before serving.